Jurong Outreach

"whom we proclaim, admonishing every man and teaching every man in all wisdom, that we may present every man perfect in Christ."

Israel and the Church

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For about 430 years the descendants of Abraham were living in Egypt. Israel’s number grew and this alarmed the Egyptians, and so the Egyptians subjugated Israel and made them labour as slaves.

“Therefore they did set over them taskmasters to afflict them with their burdens. And they built for Pharaoh storecities, Pithom and Raamses…And the Egyptians made the children of Israel to serve with rigor: and they made their lives bitter with hard service, in mortar and in brick, and in all manner of service in the field, all their service, wherein they made them serve with rigor (Exo 1:11, 13-14).”

Israel cried out to the Lord and He heard their cry. In response He sent them a deliverer—Moses.

Through the mighty display of God’s power, Moses led Israel out of Egypt into the wilderness. The Lord brought them not by shortcut through the land of the Philistines “but by the way of the wilderness by the Red Sea (Exo 13:18).”

With the Egyptian army hot in pursuit, the Lord performed one of the greatest miracles ever known to man. He parted the Red Sea and guided His people through on dry land while blocking the path of the Egyptians.

“And the angel of God, who went before the camp of Israel, removed and went behind them; and the pillar of cloud removed from before them, and stood behind them: and it came between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Israel; and there was the cloud and the darkness, yet gave it light by night: and the one came not near the other all the night (Exo 14:19-20).”

The Lord allowed the Egyptians to continue their pursuit through the parted Red Sea after Israel had safely made it across to the other side before closing the sea, drowning the Egyptian army.

“And the waters returned, and covered the chariots, and the horsemen, even all the host of Pharaoh that went in after them into the sea; there remained not so much as one of them…Thus Jehovah saved Israel that day out of the hand of the Egyptians; and Israel saw the Egyptians dead upon the seashore (Exo 14:28, 30).”

This epic historical event serves as a metaphor for the people of God of the new covenant today.

Israel was delivered out of bondage by a deliverer through the mighty workings of God’s power. The church likewise was delivered out of bondage to sin by a deliverer—Jesus Christ—by the mighty power of God.

“…our Lord Jesus Christ, Who gave himself for our sins, that he might deliver us from this present evil world, according to the will of God and our Father (Gal 1:3-4).”

Israel “were under the cloud, and all passed through the sea; and were all baptized unto Moses in the cloud and in the sea (1Co 10:1-2).”

We were baptised into Christ, “that like as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life (Rom 6:3-4).”

At Sinai the Lord made a covenant with Israel, giving them a system of law by which they were to live and worship God (Exo 20). This system of Law is known as the Law of Moses.

Under the new covenant of Christ, the church is given a new system of law by which we are to live and worship God. This system of Law is known as the Law of Christ (Gal 6:2).

The new covenant, the Law of Christ, also known as the faith (1Co16:13; 2Co 13:5; Gal 2:20; Jude 3) and the gospel (Gal 2:14; Php 1:27), is now our sole authority in religion.

Paul famously wrote: “I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me (Gal 2:20).”

We can easily replace “the faith of the Son of God” with “the Law of Christ” in this verse and the meaning remains. Living by faith (Rom 1:17) is not to live according to our subjective feelings, as unfortunately many in the religious world misunderstand, but to live according to the Law of Christ.

Now back to ancient Israel. God did not deliver them out of bondage in Egypt to wander aimlessly in the wilderness for the remainder of their lives. He brought them out of Egypt that He might bring them into the Promised Land.

Likewise the Lord has not delivered us from the bondage of sin and death to leave us to our own devices. He intends to complete the work He has begun and bring us into everlasting glory with Him in heaven.

As the Lord instructed Joshua, who is a shadow of Jesus (they even share the same name), to lead Israel and press on into Canaan (Jos 1:1-2), so we must press on toward heaven by living holy and godly lives to the glory of God.

“Wherefore the rather, brethren, give diligence to make your calling and election sure: for if ye do these things, ye shall never fall: For so an entrance shall be ministered unto you abundantly into the everlasting kingdom of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ (2Pe 1:10-11).”

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